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We Sing in Fire and Blood

Directed by Hazel Grian, Produced by Isla Badenoch // Sheffield Doc/Fest Alternate Realities Market 2018

'We Sing In Fire And Blood' is a virtual reality choral work exploring how we survive extreme violence. It is a unique and powerful VR piece based on a true story.

Seven years ago in Bristol, writer/director Hazel Grian was brutally attacked by an intruder and left for dead while the house burned. Designed to be uplifting and positive and to be experienced in groups, this is the first chapter of what will become a larger performance. Encounter a cast of police officers, nurses, neighbours and friends as they sing about their part in solving a horrific crime and caring for the victim.

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Because after the fire’s out and the blood has dried, we need to tell the story. We need to tell the story and celebrate. 

Hazel says: "I very nearly lost my life, I lost everything I owned but I learnt that my city has a brilliant capacity for empathy." She goes on to say “When my city came out to help me I realised that violence this horrific affects every one of us. Devastating events like the Manchester Arena bombing, Jo Cox murder and Grenfell Tower fire are counteracted by powerful public gatherings, often involving song. My response as an artist is to share the communal reaction to the horror of my attack through song and virtual reality."

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The experience is 15min long and is viewed in Gear VR or Oculus headsets in groups of six. Hazel then welcomes audience feedback following the viewing.

This work has been supported by Arts Council England and Watershed. Avon & Somerset Constabulary also fully support the project because they understand that in order to fight violent crime it is essential to increase civic pride and togetherness.